Caustic Soda…. I might be the last to know.

December 8, 2012

… But oh well, I’m always glad to stumble upon a podcast of awesome.

So Caustic Soda is a fantastic podcast, mostly concerned about the most random, yet oddly relatable topics you can think of. It’s quite morbid, which is basically a required personality trait for my family, so I’m quite naturally drawn to it.

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Like I mentioned, I’m pretty behind on the episodes, but just finished listening to the Music episode, which touches base with music used in the U.S. military as an experimental form of torture, which actually makes ridiculous sense. One of the songs mentioned was “We Didn’t Start the Fire” by Billy Joel, and when it was mentioned I couldn’t remember how the song went at all. Later on that day, had a tune in my head I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what it was, until my girlfriend said “Why are you singing We Didn’t Start the Fire?”… Human brains, I tells ya!! Crazy shit….

Anyways, I digress. There’s often a solid guest host on the show, in this case Canadian comedian Sean Cullen. If you’re looking for solid Sean Cullen, CBC’s The Debaters, specifically Pie vs. Cake is a good place to start (Season 4, I think). Regardless, the podcast was a good find, and chock full of fun facts. The website is just as awesome, with extra material that is just too damned visual for a podcast.

Check it out and enjoy!

Caustic Soda Podcast

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What the hell…?

April 3, 2010

Pills!!  Now with AM/FM radio…

I’m still not sure how I feel about this… Medication nowadays is being inserted with tiny antennae that will transmit a signal to whoever, that the pill has indeed been taken.

The goods....

I didn’t know that this world of ours had such a crushing problem of people not taking their meds.  So, some smartass decided to input a tiny antenna, obviously non-toxic or else that would kind of go against the idea of taking your meds in the first place.  Also, wrapped in silver, which we ingest in minute amounts every day anyways.  So if you overdose and live, maybe you’ll shit out a nice watch in a couple days (too soon?).

What I’m curious about, if you read the article, is why they tested these pills and antennae on cadavers.  I’m just honestly curious, I don’t know anything about medicine, sooo….. anybody?


Tidal Energy

September 9, 2009

While I have a small bit of rum and calmly watch my quiche burn in the oven, I can’t help but think about tidal energy…

… I read about this project going on off the coast of the UK, and now learn that they’ve actuall constructed it this year, so I thought I’d just mention it.  In what I think is probably one of the best attempts at producing green energy, tidal energy seems to be making just as much headway as solar power (I have zero evidence to back this up).  Marine Current Turbines seems to be on of the leaders into this technology, creating a few (4?) anchored propellers in the water off the west coast of the UK as a project called SeaGen.  In it’s super simplest form, it’s basically taking a wind turbine and putting it in the water.  It uses the the tide cycle, which occurs twice a day, to drive turbines generating electricity, not unlike a wind turbine; the blades spin one direction for the incoming tides, then the blades rotate to accomodate the outgoing tide later on (or is it outgoing, then incoming?  I can’t remember…).  Below is a little visual put out by Marine Current Turbines to explain it with pretty pictures…

I hope this idea catches on, seeing as tidal energy can be harnessed wherever there’s a coastline pretty much.  What caught my attention was an ongoing project with Marine Current Turbines in eastern Canada to harness the energy of the Bay of Fundy, which has the largest tides in the world weighing in at 15m.  While there are already dams in place to control the flow of the tides, a propeller turbine system like the SeaGen seems a lot less invasive and less of an eyesore.

Ummm… apparently that’s all I’ve got.  I seem to be a little tired.


The Clean Bin Project = Good stuff.

May 30, 2009
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A garbage bin... most likely not clean.

I read a lot of stuff (no, I don’t), and by reading, I mean flipping through catalogues, such as the outdoor catalogue of MEC (Mountain Equipment Co-op).

Background: For all the non-Canadians, MEC is a is a cooperative business specializing in outdoor equipment where every member buys a share for $5 (I think it’s $5) and then technically you own a part of the company.  There are stores located across Canada and you can order online, yada yada.  For Americans, it’s basically REI.

Anyways, I was flipping through the catalogue and read this little piece about these three people taking a wicked initiative to not buy any consumer goods for a year (excluding food, but there are rules about that deliciousness too).  I thought this sounded like a pretty cool idea, especially when I heard that they’re not hippies… honestly, if they were, I probably wouldn’t pay attention… sorry hippies.

I went to their site, and noticed that they’re almost done, which kind of bummed me out a bit.  Only 20-30 some odd days to go.  But, while I think their project is a good idea, and I say kudos for taking it on (because I probably wouldn’t survive), I’m more anxious (excited-wise) to see their documentary about the whole ordeal.  I especially like the bit in the preview where the girl, Jen I presume, mentions that while having no waste for your groceries while in line at the grocery store, the person behind you is double-bagging all their stuff anyways… so will it make a difference?  Honestly, I think about that everytime I go to the grocery store, or any store for that matter.  Because I’m so used to brining my own bags (when I forget them I feel like everyone is watching), that I don’t understand how everyone else hasn’t caught on?  It doesn’t make sense to me…

Anyways, I hope that the documentary reaches a lot of people when it comes out, and is made out of recycled Steven Seagal DVD covers (I’m sure there are a lot of them).  While it might not make a difference on a global scale, even getting a hundred people to at least  think about consuming less will do some good… it’s not rocket science, just science.

Good on ya guys, and congratulations on your $1000 MEC gift certificate which I’m sure you’ve enshrined on top of your fridge of something.  And for the record, MEC is the only catalogue I read… and Mohair Clothes Weekly.


Element videos for everyone!

February 6, 2009

I’m not big on chemistry, unless it’s related to geology… hence, geochemistry… but I thought this was a pretty cool idea.  A couple of scientists from the University of Nottingham put together short 3-5 minute videos for each element on the periodic table!  It’s a cool way to learn, and they have a ton of experiments, facts, and history about each.  Plus one of the guys has crazy hair, and you just know he has crazy theories about being crazy.

Check it out here.

So if you feel like wow-ing your friends at parties with fun facts about chemistry, you probably shouldn’t… assuming you have friends.

*sidenote*  I was in Victoria, BC this past week and walking downtown, my friend and I saw a man on a corner with two protest boards, I can’t remember what the first one was, but the bigger one said ‘Repent you evil scientists!’.  It was slightly offensive, but I couldn’t help but laugh, and I wish I had my camera.


Never a dull day at TED.

February 6, 2009

If you haven’t heard of TED, then now is the time.  TED (Technology, Entertainment, and Design) is basically a conference of top minds getting together and spreading their ideas.  The wicked thing about TED.com, is that they post all of the talks online throughout the year, and some of them are pretty fantastic and eye-opening.

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My friend Jane, who has a fantastic blog on WordPress by the way, first introduced me to TED almost a year ago, and I haven’t been able to stop watching it since.  However, this week is the week when the actual conference takes place in Long Beach, and all the new talks for 2009 are going on.  One such talk by Bill Gates probably caught most people’s attention when he spoke of the containment of malaria around the world, and in an effort to drive the message home, releases a small swarm of mosquitoes into the audience.

Although I like his talk, he does go out on a tangent talking about the education system (which is fine, and I get the connection), but it just caught me by surprise and I actually wanted to know more about his plans for malaria, which is kind of ironic because he speaks of the lack of education for malaria, yet isn’t educating me through his talk!  But that’s just me, and it was still a good listen!